Monday, October 3, 2011

Facebook Changes and How it Affects Users

I have to admit, the title of this post, along with the truth it reflects, just makes me tired. It has become almost a full-time job just trying to keep up with Facebook changes. So why is Facebook rolling out so many new changes and tweaks? In my opinion, it’s because of Google Plus. Those who developed Google + have addressed some of the major headaches associated with Facebook. Now Facebook is in a desperate game of catch-up. Personally, I think they’re fighting a losing battle. I already prefer Google + in its simplicity and ease of use.

BUT, we have to remember that the majority of our audience is still active on Facebook. Because of that we need to continue to have a Facebook presence and today I’ll try to help you navigate some of the changes they’ve instituted.

First, there is no longer an Edit Page button on your profile page. This left me totally confused until I accidently clicked on my name to the right of my profile picture and discovered that led me to another page with editing options.

Second, Facebook is starting something new with Timelines. This is good for advertisers, but iffy—at best—for the rest of us. Now, in various places on the web, you’ll have the option to give permission for that site to add this or post to your Timeline. Translated, this means anything you do on that website will be reported on Facebook. For example, if you’re reading the Huffington Post site and give permission for it to post to your timeline, your Facebook followers will know EVERY article you click (or accidently) click on. Can you see the possibilities for embarrassment? Even without potentially embarrassing scenarios, it’s very invasive.

Third, the way we interact with friends. In the past, all of our friends have shown up equally in our Facebook feed. Now, Facebook is deciding who we want to hear from—without asking our opinion! There is no way to set, updates from all. Now we must subscribe to our friends and tell Facebook how often we want to see them in our feed.

Fourth, hiding posts. It used to be possible to just hide certain posts. Now we must unsubscribe to that particular story. And in some cases we don’t have that option, only the option of unsubscribing to that individual.

Needless to say, this isn’t all the changes made to Facebook. I’d have to write a book to cover them all, and then they’d be obsolete by the time it was published. Be sure to let me know any questions you have about the most recent changes and I'll see if I can find the answer.

Just don't forget to join the conversation!


  1. The concept of Facebook is great,but I feel it's a bit of a headache too. I find myself more on Twitter than on Facebook for the ease of use. I'm on Google +, but I haven't spent enough time on it to use it to its potential.

    You said you'd have to write a book to talk about all the changes--if you do that, they're going to make even more changes. ;)

    Thanks for the information. I learned more from reading your post than being on Facebook.

  2. I think Facebook grows more frustrating with each version. The Google "family" of apps is way more user-friendly and the way their apps integrate is impressive. Mad props to their design team - they do their homework AND the extra credit.

    Been too sidetracked with FB changes, so I haven't ventured much into Google+ yet. It'll have to wait. I've got stuff to submit :)

  3. Aarrggghhhh! Why can't they leave well-enough alone??? (Okay, I'm over it)

    Seriously, I think they've lost sight of the original concept--connecting people. I still love that I can check in with family and friends, but their determination to control is making harder to love.

    Thanks for the info, Edie. Now I know that I know even less than I thought I knew!

  4. How can we unsubscribe to someone w/o hurting their feelings? I really need the answer to this one!
    I'm about ready to give FB up 'cause I can't keep up with all of this insanity as well as my own. Enough already!

  5. Facebook, to me, if now like crack. I'm addicted to it. I have so many connections there, and I get a new high from it every day (good articles, new friends, funny and poignant pictures) ... but at the end of that high, is the horrible crash - the changes. It gives me a headache. But! It's so ingrained that I suppose we must adapt, amend, adjust if we wish to continue.

  6. Thank you for all of your help, Edie!! Keep it coming, please!!

  7. The new timelines addition will definitely cause some trouble. I hope it will be obvious on the web that it's being posted on fb...I feel like I stay in confusion mode on the computer enough as it is, and fb doesn't help!

  8. Lisa, I agree with you completely. I love Twitter. I'm working on a post about Google+ and will hopefully have it up soon.
    Susan, I like your priorities! And yes, Google definitely rocks in their design department. Let's hope they continue to pay attention to what drives us nuts about Facebook.
    Vonda, we're all in the same boat! All of us find ourselves constantly starting over with Facebook.
    Bren, when you unsubscribe someone from Facebook, they don't get a message or anything. Chances are, with all the new changes, they'll never even notice! So I say, go for it.
    Karen, that's why I use Tweetdeck for the majority of my Facebook time. It keeps me up to date without sucking me under!
    Kristi, thanks for stopping by! I'll continue to fight to keep us all at least informed about updates with social media. I don't know many who can actually keep up!
    Celeste, you have to agree to have something added to your timeline before it shows up. Look for the word TIMELINE. If you see it click NO. If you don't see it, it's okay to click ALLOW.
    Blessings All - E

  9. Did FB do away with Friend requests in the transition to Subcribers? Grrrrhhhh!